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View topic - Scored the holy grail Sony tuner

Scored the holy grail Sony tuner

This is the place for where you can post links to great Sony related deals that you found on the internet. You can also lists products that you want. Also, groupbuys deals are listed.

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by mhedges » Tue Mar 30, 2010 4:18 pm

I just picked up a VERY rare Sony ST-SA5ES tuner on Ebay for the (IMHO) very low price of $100.  This tuner is even rarer than the TA-N90ES amp, although obviously not as valuable.

The seller said it was in excellent condition - I hope it is.  The pictures were not very good and there was some tape residue on the top of it but that should come off.  The seller has very good feedback so I am hoping for the best.

After I get it I will have four tuners - the SA5ES, SA50ES, S730ES, and the S700ES.  Gonna have to sell off a couple...

I will post pictures when I get it.

Mark
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by nightmare » Wed Mar 31, 2010 4:03 pm

Nice find. When you receive it can you compare it to the SA50ES(build quality, reception, etc)?



I checked the auction and it looks like there's a small nick above the SONY logo too. Have to disagree with you about it being even rarer than the N90ES, but it's still pretty rare. The last two I saw sold at something like ~$250 and ~$300 (and weren't even in good cosmetic condition) so you got an excellent deal.

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by jttar » Wed Mar 31, 2010 4:51 pm

Hi Mark,

Congratulations on your "new" ST-SA5ES! Your sharp eyes and keen sense of finding these gems has paid off nicely. Keeping my fingers crossed that it arrives safely. I look forward to looking at those pics.

Joe
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by mhedges » Thu Apr 01, 2010 4:33 am

Thanks guys - I actually received it yesterday.

I based my comment on its rarity on the fact that over the last couple months I have only seen 2 come up for sale, whereas I have seen 4-5 N90ES come up for sale in the same time period.  Also I thought I read somewhere that it was rarer than the N90ES.  Anyway it is certainly very hard to find.

Cosmetic condition was pretty good - more that acceptable for the price.  You can see where the tape residue was on the top if you look at it just right.  It also does have a very small scrape on the corner above the SONY logo (good eye, Nightmare).

Comparisons to the SA50ES - build quality seems much higher.  The case is heavier and the transformer is much bigger.  It is similar in design to the S730ES whereas the SA50ES is very different.  Sensitivity wise it is about the same as the SA50ES, which is pretty sensitive and quite a bit better than the S730ES.  Sound quality wise I haven't listened enough to compare.

Here are a couple pics of the insides.  The one with almost nothing in it is the SA50ES.

Mark

Here is the scrape by the logo:

Inside of the SA5ES:


Here is the inside of the SA50ES :
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by frahengeo » Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:36 am

Very nice! Its not even listed on TVK. Listening to a little MJ while taking it apart, are you?

I have the 333XIIES (Asian version of the 730), but the 333XIIES appears like it has more guts.

Out of curiosity, would you happen to know where I might find a spare tray loading belt for an old Sony CDP?
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by mhedges » Fri Apr 02, 2010 4:10 am

Your right - I just got the Thriller SACD and thought I would give it a spin.

You may want to check ebay for a belt for your player. I see people selling replacement belts there from time to time.

Mark
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by ShadowLord » Tue Jun 29, 2010 8:44 pm

Mark,

Excellent find on the tuner. I have always wondered baout the old ES tuners. Unfortunately, it is very hard to find info on them and determine which is better for what purpose. Since you own a number of them, if you don't mind, could you enlighten the rest of us as to quality/features/etc. of the different tuners? Thanks!

BTW: How is the N90ES working?

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by mhedges » Wed Jun 30, 2010 5:54 pm

Shadowlord -

Here is my take on the Sony tuners I have tried in chronological order of their release:

ST-S700ES - A good tuner but rare. One antenna, 10 presets. No knob for tuning - must use buttons. Reception is OK - probably a little better than the S730ES but not as good as the SA5ES or SA50ES. Sells for about $60 or so lately.

ST-S730ES - A very nice looking tuner with a big analog tuning knob. 20 presets (2 banks of 10). Can be remote controlled if you connect it to a compatible Sony preamp with a Control S cable. Very good sound quality but the sensitivity is not so good. You need to have a good outdoor antenna or live in an urban area to get really good performance from it. Not as rare as the S700ES but sells for almost twice as much $$ - say $100-120.

ST-SA5ES - First tuner with the "new" post 1995 ish Sony ES line style. Electronically an evolution of the S700/730/707ES line. 40 presets (4 banks of 10). Good sound quality and good sensitivity (FM). The AM section is not so good. Probably the rarest of the ES tuner. My guess is average price is $200 or so. Can be remote controlled but did not ship with a remote so it can be hard to find the codes (my RM-AV2100 had them).

ST-SA50ES - On the outside it looks very similar to the SA5ES. Inside it is quite different (see pics above). 40 presets (4 banks of 10). The most sensitive of all the tuners I have tried. Better AM sensitivity than the SA5ES. Sound quality is not bad but probably not as good as the others. Quite common on ebay, sells for $40-75. Can be remote controlled but did not ship with a remote so it can be hard to find the codes (my RM-AV2100 had them). It has much more "computer" control than the other tuners, with lots of features like autoprogramming and a very nice digital signal strength gauge, which is much more accurate than the analog gauges of the other tuners. Many of the features are not mentioned in the manual and you just have to find them yourself. This could have been a REALLY cool tuner if Sony didn't cheap out on the power supply and analog output section.

As an aside, the European SA5ES appears to take the best of the US SA5 and SA50ES, with an encapsulated RF section like the SA50ES but a more robust output section like the SA5ES.

Mark
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by ShadowLord » Sun Jul 25, 2010 11:38 pm

Mark,

Thanks for that great explanation. It is a shame that with all the focus on "putting everything under one roof" people no longer have the option to mix and match.
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by gwbishop » Mon Sep 06, 2010 10:19 am

I was thinking about putting my tuners up for sale and since you already have a description of my S700ES - i will
Also have a ST-S550ES which you don't mention - need it to complete your collection?
If anyone is interested I can put up photos
Grant
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